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18 feared dead in fresh Niger boat mishap

By Wole Mosadomi

Another boat mishap has occurred in Kokoli village in Borgu Local Government Area of Niger state with 18 people feared dead.

This tragedy came barely six days after the boat mishap in Malale village along River Niger in the LGA  in which 26 lives were lost.

Our correspondent gathered that 10 corpses from the latest tragedy had being recovered.

It was also gathered that, out of the 18 feared dead, 16 were women.

It was gathered that the boat capsized while conveying traders from the weekly Thursday market from Kokoli village to Ulakami at about 4pm.

The boat was said to be carrying no fewer than 80 passengers when it suddenly broke into two half way into their journey.

One of the survivors, called Umar Ibrahim, told newsmen that they were only half way into their journey when the boat suddenly split into two with the passengers drowning.

According to him, “we had just gone to the middle of the journey which is about 10 kilometres when the boat split into two and people started screaming and falling into water”.

He said because of his experience in swimming, he was able to swim to safety and also able to rescue about 10 people, mainly women and children.

The survivor said the casualties would have been  more if not for the rescue operation by the captain of the boat and other passengers in the boat who rose to the occasion by rescuing other passengers who could not swim.

The village head, Mohammed Garba, confirmed that after frantic search, 18 people were ascertained dead and recovered.


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